Wednesday, April 16, 2014

LCF Industries Arp-8 Eurorack Arpeggiator

LCF Industries
Arp-8 prototype
LCF Industries uploaded a video of the Arp-8 arpeggiator prototype to YouTube.
Price and availability are still unknown, but the features are pretty impressive...

" Something was missing from my growing modular. I couldn't figure out what it was. Then after playing with a Polysix for a while it hit me; An arpeggiator!

So using the MIDI-CV Converter I made, I started playing around with the code a bit. And then a couple of hours later I came up with a pretty decent arpeggiator. It didn't have much control (only the two switches) but it worked! So the next step was to expand on it but still keep it as small as possible.

Octave knob: Selects between a 1-4 octave range
Rate knob: If synced with a MIDI clock, it will divide the tempo accordingly; 1-1
1-2
1-4
1-8
1-8T
1-16
1-16T
1-32

V/Octave Out
Hz/Volt Out
Gate Out
Clk In: Bypasses MIDI-clock messages and uses an external clock source.
Directional switch: Up, Down, Up/Down
Sync Switch: If no external clock source is available (MIDI or analog), flipping to the FREE position will prompt it to use it's own internal clock. Use the Rate knob to increase the speed.
Arp / Mono Switch: Turns the arpeggiator into a simple single-channel MIDI-CV converter."

Video:Arp-8

" MIDI Controlled Arpeggiator
http://lcf-industries.blogspot.com "

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Modular Wild presents "Patch it" - "The Ten Gallon Patch"

A new PATCH IT series (four parts in total) by Raul Pena started today.

Video 1: Modular Wild presents "Patch it"- "The Ten Gallon Patch"-Part One

" Part One of an extended segment exploring a free form patching demonstration with a 6U eurorack system. Sound and Video by Raul Pena."

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Twisted Electrons Octopus Eurorack CV Sequencer Module Preview

Twisted Electrons has been a relatively unknown brand on the hardware market, so far they only released a bunch of apps and the (hardware) AY3 synth for chip-tune music based on the AY8912 from vintage machines.

Now it looks like they are getting into Eurorack with their new Octopus CV Sequencer module.
They uploaded this video preview today, but there's not much info yet.
It looks nice, i hope i can add the details soon...

Video: Octopus Eurorack CV Sequencer Module Preview

no description available
Uploaded by Twisted Electrons

Twisted Electrons on Facebook:

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Build a Modular Synth in seven months! by @ScorbieUK

Scorbie built an impressive modular in just 7 months, and in this video he shows the result.
Almost 25 minutes of modular goodness...

Video: Build a Modular Synth in seven months!

" After seeing the modular documentary I Dream Of Wires, I decided back in September of 2013 I wanted to get one.
After months of obsessing and invaluable help from a few friends and people in the modular underworld, my first case is just about complete.
Even building my own now!
Rick Holt of Frequency Central & Rickard Steffensen from Sweden have been incredibly patient and supportive and I will forever be grateful.
Made a couple really good friends.
Visit frequencycentral.co.uk and look up Steffensen on Muffwiggler.com.
Small manufacturers who's modules are better than most of the well known makes out there.

In the case:
Frequency Central: System X VCO, Waverider DVCO, Electro Cardiogram Filter, Vogue Filter, Multipoles, Waverunner LFO, Continuum Phase Shifter, Trans Europa, Raging Bull* & System X S&H/Noise* (* DIY build soon).
Steffensen: Oscillarp (X2) and Envelarp ADSR (based on ARP2600).
Doepfer: A140 ADSR, A180 Multiples, A147 VCLFO, A106 Xtreme Filter, A138 Mixer.
Oakley Classic VCA, Tiptop Z3000, Make Noise Maths, Pittsburg MIDI2 and a few more bits to build including 4 ARP Odyssey VCOs and an ARP2600 12db LPF.
I've DIY'd all of the Frequency Central and Steffensen modules in the case. About two rows worth.
Didn't know how to solder seven months ago, let alone understand a schematic or what a resistor was. :)

Midlife crisis. Yep. And it f*cking rules!"
Uploaded by scorbie
Also check out Scorbie.com

Sunday, April 06, 2014

Doepfer A-138 On/Off Switches Modification by Philippe Beaubrun

A-138 Mod by
Philippe Beaubrun
Philippe Beaubrun posted a few pictures on Facebook about his small Doepfer A-138 modification.
He added 2 HP wide breakout panels with 4 switches next to the A-138, to turn the individual channels on or off.


The pictures are quite clear, so re-creating this mod will be a piece of cake...

Personally I would prefer my switches on a 4HP wide panel for cosmetic reasons, but this doesn't look too bad.


More pictures HERE

Saturday, April 05, 2014

Quick Tip: Velcro Cablebinders

Velcro cable-binders in different
sizes
Okay... I'm re-organizing the studio (again) and came to the conclusion that it was a good idea of me to use Velcro cable-binders to keep my audio- and MIDI-cables together, the last time that i put up my current setup.

It was a piece of cake removing the old ones, and it works better than the plastic cable-ties (tie-wraps) that I used before that.

Velcro cable-binders can be found in a lot of different colors and sizes at your local hardware-store or cable-supplier.
You can even think about color-coding your cables this way and use different colors for audio / MIDI etc...

Some (audio-)cable-manufacturers even package their cables with Velcro cable-binders nowadays, and often they are long enough to cut into a few smaller ones...

More Quick Tips at http://patchpierre.blogspot.nl/search/label/Quick%20Tip

Friday, April 04, 2014

Doepfer Dark Energy 2 DIY Mod. Breakout Box Walkthrough by Organzoner

Organzoner posted a great video with a step-by-step tutorial on how to expand the capabilities of the Doepfer Dark Energy 2 by adding a breakout box...

Video: Doepfer Dark Energy 2 DIY Mod. Breakout box walkthrough

" Here's a step-by-step walk through of how to get more patch points from your DEII.
All the jumpers are connected to the internal circuits according to the information found on the Doepfer website: http://www.doepfer.de/pdf/Dark_Energy...
thank you creativegallerys and other experimenters on Google for the idea.

Dieter Doepfer is legend, what an awesome semimodular synth!
nice hidden options! A great synth right out of the box. Now I just want to build an A-100!!!
...ordered an intellijel metropolis for CV gate/pitch sequencing the DEII and Moog SlimPhatty.
- organ zoner organzoner organz owner"

Uploaded by Organzoner

Thursday, April 03, 2014

Doepfer A-112 Sampler Modular Digital Delay by LESINDES

Another nice video via YouTube.
LESINDES shows a weird-sounding delay-effect, created with a Doepfer A-112 Sampler...
Too bad the patch isn't explained in the video, but nevertheless interesting enough to watch/listen.

Video: Doepfer A-112 Sampler -- Modular Digital Delay


" This is a very special use of the Doepfer Modular System A-100 to create a Digital Delay sound which is not so easy btw ;-) But you are refunded with a very weird FX that you cannot create other than through a modular system"
Uploaded by LESINDES

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Doepfer Sound-Sampler Ad from 1984

This old Doepfer ad popped up at http://www.synthmuseum.de/ recently.
It's an ad for the Doepfer Sound Sampler that was released in 1984.
This module was the precursor of the A-112 Sampler that was released more than a decade later...

Although the ad is in the German language, i found it interesting enough to share it here with you (with the English translation below)

Doepfer Sound-Sampler magazine-ad from 1984 

" Sound - Sampler
The Revolution in Music Electronics:
What seemed beyond our means until now, will now be possible for an absolute top-price: Recording your favorite sound digitally, and then play it with a keyboard or sequencer (For example replicating traditional instruments, Singing, Choir, Orchestra etc.)
Connected to a personal computer, digital synthesis (like the 'big' digital synths) is possible.
Resolution 8bit, 32kbyte memory.
Preliminary info is available as Info(leaflet) , a demo-cassette and in build-instructions. (will be deducted when you order the DIY-kit)
Info 1.- *Demo-Cassette 10.- *Build-Instructions(60 pages) 30.-
Monophonic Kit: 700.- *Additional Voices starting at 390.-"
(all prices in DM /DeutchMarks)

Find out more about this Doepfer Sound Sampler at http://patchpierre.blogspot.nl/2013/01/doepfer-sound-sampler-1984.html

More Doepfer History:
Dieter Doepfer Interview:
http://patchpierre.blogspot.nl/p/doepfer-keys-interview_30.html
Doepfer Timeline:
http://patchpierre.blogspot.nl/p/doepfer-timeline.html
Doepfer History blogposts:
http://patchpierre.blogspot.nl/search/label/Doepfer%20History


Sunday, March 30, 2014

Animodule SOB Filter Videos by @DivKid

It's good to see that more and more people start making really interesting Eurorack tutorial videos lately.
DivKid started a new series last month but i kinda missed it back then.
Here's a nice set of videos with Animodule SOB Filter tutorials.

Video 1: EURORACK MODULE - Animodule - SOB Filter Part 1


" The Animodule SOB filter is a pretty amazing bit of kit, 2 inputs that can clip with a wavefolder, state variable filter and tonnes of personality and character. It can handle smooth well but for me excels at more driven and characterful filtering. It also passes CV acting as a slew limiter and self oscillates creating a crude oscillator, some heavy percussive thumps and hardcore kicks along with going really slow to make for a useful LFO should you run out mid patch.
Subscribe to the channel for more and always feel free to comment."
 
Video 2: EURORACK MODULE - Animodule - SOB Filter Part 2

" Here's part 2 of the SOB Filter overview video. The SOB is a great state variable filter (with built in wavefolder) for eurorack modular systems from AniModule.
Any questions or anything feel free to comment."
Uploaded by DivKidMusic
Get in touch at - twitter.com/DivKid
Here's his video series thread on Muff Wiggler - 
http://www.muffwiggler.com/forum/view...

Thursday, March 27, 2014

The Rest: Alesis MMT-8 Sequencer

Alesis MMT-8 Multi Track MIDI Recorder
The Doepfer A-100 is not the only equipment in my studio.
Although I am not a collector, I do have some other quite interesting (classic) machines which I review in this section called 'The Rest'
This is the second installment, find part one (about my Waldorf Pulse HERE)

The Alesis MMT-8 Multi Track MIDI Recorder was released at the end of 1987, together with its 'brother', the HR-16 Drummachine.
It is a very reliable sequencer with 100 pattern and 100 song memories and almost as reliable as my old trusty Atari ST computer, which has been the most stable sequencer I ever had... :-(  ...may it rest in peace...

" The MMT-8 is a simple MIDI sequencer that is still used today by some of the biggest names in electronic music (Orbital, Moby, Jimmy Edgar, Autechre and Carl Craig.) because of its simplicity, durability and reliability.

It's a pattern and song based sequencer with 8 separate tracks and each of the tracks can carry 16 channels of Midi info which makes this more like 128 tracks.
Tracks can be muted during playback giving you a lot of performance control for a live situation."

I bought this sequencer second-hand about 15 years ago for around 100 Dutch Guilders (45 Euro), and tried it in my setup for half a year or so, in cooperation with Cubase on my PC with a 4x4 M-Audio MIDI breakout box.
My whole workflow was different then, I tried to get the most of my set by using most MIDI-channels of every synth I had, so i ended up using Cubase more than i did use the MMT-8.

Now that my setup has changed into some kind of minimal live-jam-setup i am really considering integrating this fun little sequencer back in my setup again as a main sequencer.
At the moment my small setup is MIDI-synced via my Roland R-8 drummachine, with my other synths/sequencers playing loops, but it's still pretty basic.
With an extra sequencer I will be able to put more (and longer) melody-lines in my music.
I haven't tried it yet in my current setup, but i think this will work...
My main concern is that the MMT-8 only has a single set of MIDI In/Out/Thru connectors, so i have to put all my machines in a chain-setup.
I just hope this doesn't cause too much lag in the synths that are last in the chain.

Alesis MMT-8 with a quick
manual under the hood
From my own experiences I already learned that the first in the chain to prevent an audible lag should be my Drummachines (R-8 and a Machinedrum), but after that i need to attach at least 5 more synths.
I hope this works out well... I might need to invest in a MIDI-splitter though.(mainly for synchronizing-reasons)
If it doesnt' work out the way I want might want to sell it.

A second-hand MPC-1000 (or newer) is on my wishlist for a long time, but i still don't have the funds yet. #priorities
Multiple MIDI-Outputs are better, and the MPC's have multiple MIDI-Inputs too, which means I can also attach more of my keyboards (JV-90, Prophecy and BassStation).
The built-in sampler will mean that don't need my current E-Mu ESI-32 sampler anymore and that i have to copy over all the samplebanks that i already built for that....

I hope to have my new setup configuration with the MMT-8 ready at the end of next month (depends on the weather too), and I'll let you know how it all turned out.
You will probably spot it in my next live-jam-videos...

First i still need to get my mixing-desk fixed. That's another thing that's gonna cost me a small fortune.
More soon...

Aesis HR-16/MMT-8 book
by Craig Anderton
I'm still looking for this book by Craig Anderton about the MMT-8/HR-16(B)
It seems to be the only printed book relating to the MMT-8.
It is split into four (2x2) sections and the section relating to the MMT-8 doesn't give any more information about the MMT-8 or how to use it than the manual does.
However, certain features are expanded upon and explained in greater detail than the manual.
Overall, the book makes a good introduction for beginners to MIDI and the MMT-8, and is a handy reference for more experienced users.

Source/More info: http://www.vintagesynth.com/misc/mmt8.php
MMT-8 Website: http://www.mmt8.com/
Manual (PDF) at http://www.mmt8.com/files/mmt8.pdf

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Random Video: Guitar Straight into the Doepfer Analog Synthesizer

Here's an older video (from August2010) that explains how you can simply play your synth with a guitar by only using a Doepfer A-160 Clock Divider.
This seems to work great and outputs a nice square wave, and logically, this works best with single notes (great for solos after some good practicing)
After the A-160 module you can route the sound to anywhere you like... just plug and play!

Video: Guitar Straight into the Doepfer Analog Synthesizer

" Ok Ok, this is crazy... This video shows you how to (without any 'special' modules whatsoever) play an analog mod synth with a regular ol guitar. I discovered a very common, but unusual module to convert the guitar signal into audio: the clock divider... insanity ensues...
© Philip Mease 2010"
Uploaded by PSMProjectVids

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Doepfer A-111 FM Carillion by @Jakobsweb

Jakobsweb has uploaded an interesting video showing off the FM capabilities of the Doepfer A-111 VCO (linear FM)

Video: Doepfer A-111 FM Carillion by Jakobsweb

" Not a song! This is meant to demonstrate the FM capabilities of the Doepfer A-111 VCO (linear FM).No filter used.
Additional modules used:
A-143-9 Sine VCO/LFO used as modulating VCO, the A-111s are carriers.
A-149-1/2 Quantized/Stored Random Voltages triggering additional pitch CV on the A-111 VCOs.
Synthesis Technologies E560 Deflector Shield adding FM flavour.
Last not least Make Noise Echophone creating addtional echoes.
Doepfer A-131 VCA, A-134 panning module and A-140 envelope for VCA."

Uploaded by jakobsweb

Friday, March 21, 2014

More A-190-4 MIDI-CV/Gate/Sync Interface Specifications

Last year, quickly after the A-190-4 prototype suddenly appeared in the wild, i already contacted Dieter Doepfer about some of the specs of the module.

The Doepfer A-190-4 will be the new replacement for module A-190-1 which is no longer available.
The functions of A-190-1 and A-190-4 are nearly the same (Midi In, Midi Out, CV1, CV2, Gate, Clock, Reset), but the operation of the A-190-4 has been improved because a 3-digit LED display is available.

The current values of all parameters (like Midi channel, reference note, clock divider) can be read back and modified by means of up/down buttons.
In addition A-190-4 is equipped with an USB interface and the external +5V supply is no longer available.

A-190(-1)  MIDI-CV/Sync
Interface
The A-190-1 has 2  DACs (Digital-to-Analog Converters)
In the original A-190-1 DAC 1 is 'hard-wired' to receive MIDI note messages and convert them into control voltages available at CV output socket CV 1. This DAC has 12-bit resolution, which gives excellent tuning resolution (in steps of 1/4096th). As a rule, DAC 1 will be used to control VCO pitch.
DAC 2 can be assigned to your choice of MIDI controller. This DAC has 7-bit resolution (1/128th steps).

At the time (almost one year ago) Dieter couldn't tell much about the processing power and if any other functions would be available (arpeggiator? like the A-190-3), but this week I have managed to get a bit more info.
Christian Assall, software developer at Doepfer, was kind enough to explain a few more things about the A-190-4 via e-mail:

A-190-4 Prototype
- "The A-190-4 will have 2 new DACs... Because the development of the A-190-1 was now before more than 15 years, it makes sense to use modern pieces."

- "DAC2 will now also be 12 bit and will have a range of 0 ... 10 + volt ( but can also only use it for velocity/controller and things similar to the A190-1 , but not for pitch/tune controlling like the CV1 - so it's not possible to control two voices - because you also have only one gate ;-) - for polyphonic things we have the A190-5 in development"

About future firmware updates:
- "As the next development in schedule list is the A-190-5 - which is something like a 'great' brother of the A-190-4 - the A-190-4 has in most cases the possibility to inherit his features...
...so it's more a question of what we and the users want and decide to include in a preferably easy to use CV-interface the A-190-4 should be... This also belongs to the topic arpeggiator."

The A-190-1 Arpeg. mode never got released 
About the somewhat hidden arpeggiator-function in the A-190-3:
- " It's more a cost-free present or an eastern-egg like thing than a real feature in my eyes, because it hasn't any dedicated switches or display for that - so I think it's for many users hard to use ...
But if you can - sure you can use it and you can do some arp. things without any additional devices/software ...."

- " We never released this feature in the A-190-1, mostly because of the not optimal user interface, that was not suited in our eyes for additional and such a complex features.
An arp. should have a dedicated/suitable user interface - otherwise it didn't make much sense in my experience/eyes.
Sure also the weak processor power was a reason, not to try with many tricks to get an arp. which is in timing and didn't interfere with the other functions of the module.
So, never to release, was more a matured consideration that came from practical experiences..."

The A-190-1 will be replaced by the A-190-4 from about April 2014.
As of April, the Doepfer BS basic systems will come with an A-190-4 installed...